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The 13th Juror (2005)

The 13th Juror (2005)
4.12 of 5 Votes: 3
0451215931 (ISBN13: 9780451215932)
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The 13th Juror (2005)
The 13th Juror (2005)

About book: The best short synopsis I read online: "The pressure is on for Dismas Hardy when an abused woman is accused of killing her husband and child in cold blood. Only Dismas believes she's innocent. However, faith alone won't be enough to save her unless Dismas takes one terrifying risk to keep her alive." - From Powell's City of Books.The top line across the paperbook said, "The Stunning Bestseller." As one reaches for the title on the shelf, one wonders if it will truly be a "stunning" read as per marketing claims. My opinion is a "resounding YES - ABSOLUTELY! WoW!""Unusual in his ability to combine courthouse scenes with action sequences, judicial puzzles and dimensional people, Mr. Lescroart produces a full house of well-drawn characters. The many subplots, social issues and legal maneuvers of The 13th Juror come together in a fast-paced text that sustains interest to the very end." - as written by a reviewer (unknown) from The Wall Street Journal. So true, so true, so true!!! This is not my first read of a title by John Lescroart nor my first read about character Dismas Hardy and definitely will not be my last. I thought Dead Irish and other titles were great. This title was an absolutely incredible read. I could hardly put the book down each evening waiting for another night's opportunity to read before bedtime...only sleep and "the day job" made me wait for another night. This author makes a defense attorney truly "come alive" to spellbound the time you spend together between the pages.

My fourth Dismas Hardy and I really like the character, like him a lot. I like attorneys anyway, so no surprise there. And about one-half the book was a courtroom setting; ditto there, too. No problem. However, at the beginning in reading the acknowledgements, Lescroart says "My editor (and publisher) Don Fine has done a yeoman's job of nipping, tucking and tightening the sprawling manuscript into its final form..." The word that jumped out at me was "tightening" since previous books, I felt, needed some "tightening." Fluff, words to me that do not add to the story, just should not be included in the book. For instance, Hardy had the flu when he had to fly from San Francisco (setting of series) to LA. That fact added nothing to the story that I could see. He slept some, coughed, ran a fever, all those things that go with the flu and he still worked on the case. But his flu added zero to the story. If someone disagrees, would love to hear from them. It's my two cents that editor and publisher Mr. Fine should be doing a captain's job (not a yeoman's) of "nipping, tucking and tightening" since there is, for my liking, just too much fluff here, (and in other Lescroart books read.) And I like him, Lescroart and Hardy. I really, really do, but please cut the fluff. My time is too valuable for fluff.Lack of fluff is just one reason I love Raymond Chandler and the like.
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The 13th Juror is NOT a quick read, but it is one that you don't want to put down. The characters are very human and the plots and subplots keep you wondering just what the truth is. Jennifer Witt is accused of killing not only her abusive husband and only son, but also her first husband years earlier. The victims, except for the son, are not very likeable...but neither is Jennifer. Every character has their own agenda and it is hard to tell who or what to believe. The legal aspects of the story are very well explained and,as often in real life, the truth is complex and not easily revealed. You keep reading to the end to find out what really happened....and when you do it changes everything.
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Joel Ungar
I didn't think this was one of Lescroart's better ones, and I thought it was about 200 pages too long (at least the paperback version). Dismas Hardy continues to be an enjoyable character but in this one he seems rather distant. Part of that is he is still trying to segue to being a defense attorney and figuring out his relationship with David Freeman.There were some parts I didn't think were handled all that great. (Don't read this paragraph is you don't want a bit of a spoiler.) Jennifer's big escape from jail is barely addressed after it happens - a hint of how she did it but very little about what happened while she was gone and almost only an afterthought of how she was captured.Not being an attorney, I kept trying to figure out how the book's title related to the plot. When it was finally tied in, it started to make sense.Hoping the next book in the series is better than this one.
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